Imagine that G.K. Chesterton and Alexandre Dumas collaborated on an adaptation of Pepys' diary into a serial killer mystery, set in a mad version of Shakespeare's Italy (complete with twins).
In the city-state of Bonvidaeo, by custom and law everyone must wear a mask and act in character with it, or face civil, social and religious penalties.
Gregorius Bass is sent to Bonvidaeo as the Envoy of Calaria, primarily to get him out from underfoot. Masked as the Innocent Man, and in the company of his radical young Bonvidaoan servant, Bass stumbles into mystery, intrigue, heresy and murder.
City of Masks is speculative fiction (though it's neither science fiction nor fantasy). It's a mystery and an adventure (with a sword fight after a rooftop chase). There's intrigue, some humour and a little romance. Beneath it all, though, is a serious reflective point about identity and social convention.
You can download a sample containing the front matter and the first five pages of the novel or download the entire ebook for free (both in .pdf format). If you want other ebook formats they are available at Smashwords.
The beautiful cover illustration is by Donia.